On the seventh day of the Altantuya Shaariibuu murder trial, Uuriintuya Gal Ochir, 30, was continuing her testimony before judge Mohd Zaki Yasin who had asked her when she had returned to Mongolia.
Uuriintuya had previously testified that she and a friend, Namiraa Gerelmaa, had accompanied Altantuya to Malaysia on Oct 8 last year.
Uuriintuya told the packed courtroom that while Namiraa had left for Mongolia first on Oct 24, she couldn’t do the same as her passport was with Altantuya on the night the latter went missing.
“On Nov 24, I left with Altantuya’s father Shaariibuu (Setev) but at the airport we had a problem because they (immigration officials) did not have a record of Altantuya, Namiraa or me entering the country. They said they had no data of our records. The entry was deleted in the computer.
“I was still holding my air ticket so they asked me how I came into the country […] was it by sea or by car. So I showed them my ticket that had the date of when I flew into Malaysia.”
Uuriintuya was testifying at the high-profile murder trial of Chief Inspector Azilah Hadri, 30, and Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar, 35, both from the police Special Action Squad, who are charged with murdering translator Altantuya, 28, at a location between lots 12843 and 16735, Mukim Bukit Raja, between 10pm on Oct 19 and 1am on Oct 20 last year.
Political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda, 46, (pix, above left) is charged with abetting them between 9.54am on Oct 18 last year and 9.45pm the following day at Bangunan Getah Asli in Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur. All three accused face the death penalty if convicted.
As Uuriintuya was testifying, both the prosecution and defence teams raised their concerns over the relevance of the her information. However, despite objection by both counsel, she continued with her testimony through a translator.
“There was no record of our entry. At that time (Malaysian honorary consul-general for Mongolia) Syed Abdul Rahman Alhabshi was also following us to Mongolia.
“Two police officers took me (away) saying I came into the country illegally. I was there (at the airport) for two hours before they let me leave,” she said.
At this juncture, Corporal Sirul Azhar Umar’s counsel Kamarul Hisham Kamaruddin requested the court to expunge Uuriintuya’s remarks but was turned down.
“The ruling is that you don’t need to cross-examine her and this will not be expunged. It will remain here (on record),” ruled Justice Zaki.
Following this exchange, Uuriintuya got up and told her translator to tell the judge that ‘she wanted to say something’.
She then proceeded to reiterate to the court that there was no record of the three of them coming to Malaysia via Beijing. “It had been deleted. I wonder why our immigration records for entering Malaysia had been deleted?”
Earlier on, senior counsel Karpal Singh, who is holding a watching brief for Altantuya’s family, asked Uuriintuya, a mother of three, what made her certain that several items she had been asked to identify by the authorities belonged to Altantuya.
“I remember the watch because her (friend) Burmaa (Oyunchimeg) and Altantuya bought it in Hong Kong while the earrings were bought from a shop in Mongolia.
“I think the ring, she told me her boyfriend bought had for her. I believe the boyfriend was (Abdul) Razak (Baginda),” Uuriintuya told the court to gasps of surprise from the gallery.
She added that it was a diamond-studded gold ring.
The trial is expected to run for a month and to hear testimonies from 30 to 40 prosecution witnesses. Hearing continues tomorrow.
Appearing for the prosecution is deputy public prosecutor Tun Majid Tun Hamzah.